Reviews

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3D Brick Breaker Revolution : Xbox Windows Phone Review

Like Tetris, Brick Breaker is one of those games that I consider one of the classic arcade games. I’ve played a number of variations of Brick Breaker over the years, so I was pretty excited when 3D Brick Breaker Revolution made it into the Marketplace.

If you are a Brick Breaker addict, see the full review of 3D Brick Breaker Revolution after the break.

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33

Sprint's HTC Arrive - Review

Sprint customers who have been longing for a Windows Phone 7 unit are in for a treat. The latest Windows Phone, the HTC Arrive, is impressive.

We've shared a hands-on video of the new Windows Phone and now we'll take a little closer look at things.   We'll skip the formalities and jump right into it.

After the break that is.

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Yomomedia 7 - Review

Yomomedia is a popular RSS reader that first hit the scene with Windows Mobile and has successfully made the transition to Windows Phone 7 (here's our review of the classic version). Yomomedia 7 is available in two versions, a free Lite version and a pay full version.

Yomomedia 7 is a not only a media reader but you can also tap into your favorite podcasts (audio and video). Yomomedia 7 feeds can be pulled from your Google Reader account, Yomomedia 6.5 accounts (for those who used the WinMo version) or content can be chosen from Yomomedia 7's default catalog.

To see how well Yomomedia 7 made the transition to Windows Phone 7, follow the break.

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3

Cubed - Review

Cubed is a Tetris styled game for your Windows Phone that takes advantage of your phone's touch screen. The gaming concept of this Windows Phone 7 game is rather simple.

Various shaped blocks fall from the top of the screen and you rotate them as they fall to form a solid row at the bottom of the screen. As you form a solid row, it implodes and you score points. If your stacks of blocks reaches the top of the screen; game over.

To read more about Cubed, skip on past the break.

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Satalaunch - Review

Space.... the final frontier...for those who seek to launch satellites into various celestial objects there's a Windows Phone app for that.  Satalaunch is a Windows Phone 7 game that challenges you to launch "Astro" ,your satellite, into moons, planets and stars.  Along the way you'll make use of planetary and solar gravity fields, as well as on-board thrusters to guide Astro into your targets.

The game has thirty-eight levels divided between three stages. Satalaunch is an interesting Windows Phone game and to learn more, drift on past the break.

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1

Video Poker - Review

Looking for a simple poker game for your Windows Phone? Rick Keeney has developed Video Poker for Windows Phone 7 that puts five styles of video poker on your Windows Phone.

Along with the various styles of poker, the app will maintain your gaming stats to let you know how well your playing. There are two versions of Video Poker available. You have an ad supported free version and if you don't like the banner ads, a pay version is available for $.99.

To read more on Video Poker, ease on past the break.

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Solitaire - Review

At last check there were a couple of dozen solitaire game versions for Windows Phone 7.  Jake Poznanski's Solitaire is one such version for your Windows Phone. The game follows the traditional solitaire game with a straight forward layout where you move your cards by touch.

Solitaire is a free game over at the Marketplace and to see if it's worth a download, skip on past the break.

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Mnemonix - Review

Logonoff is offering the puzzle/memory game Mnemonix over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace.  Asides from being challenging to spell, Mnemonix tests your memory by having you match identical tiles that you reveal two at a time.

You have three gaming levels (easy, normal, and hard) and the number of tiles increase as you move up in difficulty. To make things more challenging, you try to match the tiles before the game clock expires. The easy level times out at about 34 seconds with the more difficult levels giving you a little more time. Yes, I know, 34 seconds seems a little odd but I checked it several times and time expires at odd intervals.

Mnemonix has just a few settings. You can turn off the vibration (each time you touch a tile, your phone vibrates) and if you need to practice without the pressure of the clock, you can turn that off as well. Mnemonix also offers three tile designs (two symbols and one numeric) to choose from.

Your final scoring is based on the number of moves it takes for you to match all the tiles, as well as your time. Mnemonix has a very clean, nice looking appearance and ran smoothly. There is a slight addictive quality to the game but nothing that keeps you glued to the game for hours.  The attraction is strong enough to keep you interested in Mnemonix for short periods of time.  It is a nice game to add to your Windows Phone that will add a little variety to your "pass the time with" gaming titles.

There is a free trial version available and the full version runs $1.29. You can find Mnemonix here (opens Zune) over at the Marketplace. Follow the break to catch a video of Mnemonix in action.

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Bowling XX - Review

Finally, a bowling game has landed at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace! Bowling XX by Perlo Games brings the bowling alley to your Windows Phone in a graphically pleasing manner.

Bowling XX has two game modes; Single and Multi-player games. The Multi-player game supports up to four local players (pass the phone around style) who compete in a bowling tournament.  Bowling XX is an entertaining game for your Windows Phone but there is some room for improvement.

To read more on Bowling XX, follow the break.

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Arcadia Scan - Review

Arcadia Scan is one of those apps that you can use either to a) impress your mates, b) quickly check network connections (be it WiFi or 3G), or c) mess around for a few minutes when you’re utterly bored off your face (hopefully not on drugs). Unfortunately, before I continue, I must point out to you wannabe script-kiddies that this app is no ettercap.

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1

Word Search – Review

Remember the word search puzzles that are in the newspaper? You can even find books dedicated to the hidden word puzzles. Word Search for Windows Phone 7 brings the same entertaining puzzles to your Windows Phone.

The game layout is simple. You choose between three difficulties (Easy, Medium, and Hard) then select your word topic. Topics range from Animals to World Countries and if your feeling adventurous, just swipe at the topic wheel and go with whatever appears after things stop spinning.

Once the puzzle is generated (by tapping Start) a list of the hidden words is displayed at the bottom of the screen with a field of assorted letters filling the remainder of the screen. The harder the skill level, the larger the letter fields.

For more on Word Search follow the break.

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5

Chess by Post – Review

Chess by Post is a community chess game for your Windows Phone that follows in the same spirit of other popular games such as AlphaJax and Spellit. Instead of bringing a community oriented game of scrabble to Windows Phone 7, Chess by Post offers you a challenging game of chess.

There are two versions of Chess by Post, a paid and free version. The free version is ad supported and contains a small ad banner that appears at the bottom of the screen. Registration is required and free to join the chess community and find opponents to compete against.

To read more on Chess by Post, move on past the break.

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Cell – Review

Cell may very well be the only Windows Phone 7 game that has a single cell organism as the main character. The developers, 2.0 Studios, has created a game that is challenging with graphics that are a little on the psychedelic side.

Cell has three game modes that have fifteen levels each for a total of forty-five gaming challenges. With each game mode, you try to absorb other single cells to work your way towards dominating the field. Simply navigating your cell around the game screen can be challenging and there are other dangers present to keep things interesting.

To read more on Cell, drift on past the break.

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1

Castlevania Puzzle: Encore of the Night - Review

Xbox Live on Windows Phone 7 already has a puzzle RPG game, Namco’s Puzzle Quest 2. But that game is riddled with bugs and really wasn’t optimized for mobile platforms. Thankfully Castlevania Puzzle: Encore of the Night from Konami shows a lot more care in making a quality puzzle RPG. In fact, it may be the best Xbox Live title released for Windows Phone 7 so far.

Castlevania has a long, proud history. The first title was released on the 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System way back in 1987. Castlevania games tend to be action-platformers; after 1997’s Symphony of the Night, strong RPG elements became standard as well. In adapting the series to mobile platforms, Konami realized that action games don’t usually work well with touch screen controls. Prudently, Encore of the Night replaces the traditional platform jumping and battles with something new to Castlevania: puzzle battles. Role-playing elements haven’t fallen by the wayside, though, resulting in a game that is at once familiar and fresh to series veterans.

Head past the jump for our in-depth review.

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5

The Revenants: Corridor of Souls - Review

Windows Phone 7 launched with 30 or so Xbox Live titles. With so many games coming out at once, a few were bound to be overlooked. One such title is The Revenants: Corridor of Souls from Chaotic Moon Studios. It's a simple title with a couple of unique gameplay mechanics and a creepy theme.

Revenant isn’t a common word these days, so you could be forgiven for not knowing its meaning. A revenant is someone who returns from the dead (like a ghost or a zombie). In Corridor of Souls, the titular revenants consist of the spirits of creepy, crawly animals like spiders, scorpions, and frogs.

To find out more about the Corridor of Souls, head past the jump.

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Butterfly - Review

French developer Press Start Studio is best known for their hardcore action game, Twin Blades. Yet their second Xbox Live game for Windows Phone 7 lies at the opposite end of the gaming spectrum; Butterfly is one of the simplest, most casual Xbox Live games on Microsoft's mobile platform.

The object of the game is to steer the titular Butterfly around a garden, touching flowers to make them bloom. Players drag the butterfly with a finger to move. Once all of the flowers in a stage have been pollinated, an exit flower appears and it's off to the next garden.

Fly past the break for our full review.

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XMaps - Review

XMaps is a worldwide mapping application for Windows Phone 7. Similar to other navigational apps for your Windows Phone XMaps is designed to help you get from point a to b as well on the highways as well as the open wilderness.

The free application taps into openstreetmaps.org to download maps to your Windows Phone as well as offering a wide range of tools that will allow you to plan travel routes, set markers/way-points, and record your travels.

To find out more about XMaps, follow the break.

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2

Deer Hunter 3D - Review

Big game hunting has come to Windows Phone 7. Deer Hunter 3D was released a short time ago that not only brings deer hunting to your Windows Phone but also other big game such as bear, moose, and turkey.

Hunt game from various world wide venues, using a wide range of weapons. From the Russian forests to Mid-western plains you can track game on hunting trips or jump right into the action with a Quick Game mode.

To read more on Deer Hunter 3D, shoot on past the break.

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SlingPlayer for Windows Phone 7 - Review

 

The whole point of owning a smartphone is to maintain a constant connection with the things that are important to you. Your calendar, email, pictures, documents, and music are all right at your fingertips with a Windows Phone.

We’ve talked about Slingboxes and their associated apps before; but with Windows Phone 7 our devices are much more media-centric and offer better performance, making something like Sling Player something worth considering.

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Pocket Games - Review

Feeling nostalgic? Miss those gray scale games with static backgrounds? Pocket Games for Windows Phone 7 brings back memories of the old handheld games of yester-year.

Pocket Games has four classic handheld games; Highway Racer, Artic Noseball, Fire Alert and Sky Diver. Controls are simple and game play somewhat addictive. The games even have a border that resembles the plastic casing and the push "start buttons" the classic handhelds sported.

To read more on Pocket Games, just follow the break.

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GPS App - Review

Like to geocache? There's a Windows Phone app for that.

GPS App is Windows Phone 7 navigation application designed to help guide you way-points or geocaches. You can navigate your way to geocaches by way of the compass screen or use the Bing Map view.

For those not familiar geocaching is an outdoor sporting activity in which the participants use a GPS receiver to hide and seek containers, called "geocaches" or "caches", anywhere in the world.

To read more on GPS App, follow the break.

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5

A to B - Review

A-to-B is being offered over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace as a free navigation app for your Windows Phone. A-to-B offers turn by turn navigation as well as the ability to save favorite destinations.

The application was originally designed to demonstrate the capabilities of the ArcGIS API for the Windows Phone. Demo or not, A-to-B seems to have developed a rather popular following in the short time it's been in circulation.

Follow the break to read more on A-to-B.

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Traffic Cop - Review

Traffic Cop is a free game being offered over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace. Traffic Cop pits you against the flow of traffic at a busy intersection.

Controlling traffic is done by tapping the cars you want to stop and swiping the cars that need to speed up. As you progress through the game, traffic speeds and volume increases. To make things a little interesting, Traffic Cop includes a military tank and emergency vehicles that ignores any traffic direction.

Traffic Cop is an entertaining game but lacks an addictive quality to keep you coming back for more. The game is fun for a short time but doesn't have much play. After about thirty minutes, the game begins to feel a little stale. If the game had a change of scenery or achievements, maybe it would have a little more staying power. Traffic Cop does have the ability to post scores online for bragging rights but I couldn't help but feel it needed more gusto.

Regardless, Traffic Cop wouldn't be a bad addition to your Windows Phone gaming library. The game may not keep you hooked but it will add some variety to your Windows Phone. The game ran smoothly and vehicle controls were responsive to the touch.

Traffic Cop is a free app that can be found here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace. Follow the break for a video demo of the Traffic Cop.

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3

Bombsweeper - Review

Remember the game Minesweeper that was always present on your Windows PC? Techtwaddle is offering a version of this game for Windows Phone 7. Bombsweeper puts this classic game on your Windows Phone and it doesn't stray too far from the original.

The game is played just like the PC version. You face a grid of tiles that has bombs hidden beneath them. Your job is to tag the tiles covering these bombs with red flags. Tap on a tile covering a bomb and it's game over. You narrow down where the bombs are by tapping random tiles to reveal numbers. The number represents the number of mines surrounding that particular tile. For example, if a tile shows 2 then two of the surrounding tiles have bombs under it. To help, if you tap and hold on a number animates the surrounding tiles giving you a visual aid in selecting the next tile to tap or mark with a flag.

The game ran smoothly but the controls can be a little on the tricky side. To flag a square, you tap and hold on a tile. On occasion, the "tap and hold" registered as a tap and boom...game over. Otherwise, Bombsweeper is hard to distinguish from the original Minesweeper.

If your a fan of the classic PC game, Bombsweeper will be an enjoyable addition to your Windows Phone game lineup. If you're not familiar with the classic game, there is a trial version available to let you try before you buy. The full version of Bombsweeper runs $.99.

You can find Bombsweeper here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace. And just make the jump past the break to see a short video demo of Bombsweeper.

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